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AnyBody's Soap Box

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 AnyBody & EveryBody's Soap Box...


This area is exactly that; everything anybody may want to get off their chest about body image and eating issues, and general AnyBody flavoured topics.  Vent your body image issues, eating successes and pitfalls, talk back to those destructive women's magazines and advertising agencies. And help us with comments/suggestions on our 2008 campaign to see more body diversity on this years London fashion week catwalk - we're going to be hitting the streets with poscards and video virals, so watch this space!

Treat it like your own personal soap box, and leave those comments here!    Harassment.
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I received a leaflet through my door today which said "the right then, let's get rid of this muffin top gym" 
You can see the image here: http://www.thegymgroup.com

Please join me in letting them know that this is "mass bullying" here https://www.thegymgroup.com/contact-us/ choosing general enquiry as with marketing a warning comes up saying strictly for marketing or some such. When you click send it won't have sent, you get directed to faqs and then you have to click continue to send or such like at the bottom of the faqs.

I asked for a public apology and for then to be more responsible. Here is my email:

Your muffin top leaflet is not only harmful but it won't encourage people to give your business or your CEO's business money. If you really want to encourage peole to your gym and if you really have people's best interests at heart then body shaming them won't work:

The Be Real campaign held its UK Body Confidence Weekin October and released research which said 10 million British women ‘feel depressed’ about the way the look. It’s held them back from relationships, exercising and even job interviews.

It’s basically mass bullying... Because it’s no secret that British women and young girls have a confidence problem.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/11287536/Fat-shaming-Tell-a-Friend-Theyre-Chubby-Day-is-a-gross-excuse-for-bullying.html

The flesh bulging at a waist band means your jeans stay up. It means the elastic is tight enough to hold them up, unless you have a live in tailor. If you dont have flesh bulge then they'll need hoiking up constantly which is irritating. 

People "fat shaming" you because your jeans stay up is literally depressing and unnecessary no matter what your size. I am a size 8 and I still get the necessary bulge to hold my jeans up.

We need to "...take a stance against fat-shaming and sparking a wider conversation about body image and responsible advertising. 

http://r.search.yahoo.com/_ylt=A7x9Ukt8NfNUrTkAVusU8yA5;_ylu=X3oDMTBydWpobjZlBHNlYwNzcgRwb3MDMQRjb2xvA2lyMgR2dGlkAw--/RV=2/RE=1425253885/RO=10/RU=http%3a%2f%2fwww.cbc.ca%2fnewsblogs%2fyourcommunity%2f2014%2f07%2fplastic-surgeons-fat-shaming-muffin-top-billboard-vandalized.html/RK=0/RS=MD6ILTxfTb.z.pa461XFRXS6c.A-

I have also posted this here: http://anybody.squarespace.com/body_activism/post/2476869?lastPage=true
Thank you Anybody!!
March 8, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterNatalie Chow
In Australia, there is a company that rents out campervans to backpackers.These vans have spray painted slogans and mottos on them,presumably designed to make the holidaymakers, out for an adventure, feel a bit dangerous and racy. They're often just plain rude and dumb. But this one : " Fat Girls Are Harder To Kidnap!" was brought to the attention of the Advertising Standards Bureau. Here is what they has they had to say about the 'Fat Girls' part :
' The Board noted the complainants’ concerns that the advertisement is sexist and offensive to overweight people. The Board noted the reference to ‘fat girls’ and considered that the statement is general and not directed at a specific person. The Board considered that the reference to fat girls in this instance, whilst tasteless and not a nice reference, does not meet the threshold for being discriminatory or vilifying towards overweight females or to females in general. The Board considered that the advertisement did not depict material that discriminated against or vilified sections of society.' http://ms.adstandards.com.au/cases/0065-14.pdf
They went on to condemn the 'kidnap' reference as encouraging and making light of illegal behaviour. I agree, but it is extreme criminal behaviour highly unlikely to be inspired by a campervan slogan. But what does it inspire? More of the same toxic judgement. I saw that van myself - parked alongside a popular exercise track where women and men get out and enjoy their physicality. 'Not directed at a specific person'? I don't think that matters .I, for one, felt the pang of a familiar jibe. Was it Eleanor Roosevelt who said 'no-one can humiliate you without your permission'? She was right - but awareness of this attitude towards my body got 'under my skin' at an age well before I could deny permission. And it's a pervasive, amorphous insidious attitude that's so much part of the wallpaper that it's difficult to see and easy to dismiss. Withdrawing permission takes an awful lot of work. Which I'm trying to do, but I know very few women who aren't also contending with it. The ruling from the board just doesn't seem to acknowledge this.
July 13, 2014 | Unregistered Commentere.e.
A new film by the director of Pumping Iron hits selected screens on 2 January. It's called Generation Iron and will feature the extreme body builders of recent and today. Of course Pumping Iron became a classic in 1977 and made Arnold Schwarzenegger a huge star. The reason I raise this is because of the more subtle extremes that I think quietly go on in many "mainstream" gyms now in the UK. I look and listen to many of the personal trainers who I think now have to compete for clients in a way commensurate with a saturated industry . Increasingly they themselves have a driven and extreme way of promoting their personal training. In informal chats with some trainers, I hear of eating disorders and am interested that these eating disorders may be "passed onto" clients in a bid for thin body or indeed bulky body. There is a current trend for even supermarkets to be stocking expensive Protein drinks and bars. I wonder of anyone knows of any studies about eating disorders amongst personal trainers. I am not attempting to point fingers here but simply wonder about more of a dialogue before people sign up for that "punishing" schedule.
December 31, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGraham
I've reluctantly given in to my 15-year-old's desire to take the hairs off her legs. They were beautiful! They glittered in the sunlight. But she said that almost all girls now get rid of their leg hair, so I helped her buy the stuff to get rid of the hair, and in the process it's come to seem to me that most women get rid of their leg hair too, though I'd never noticed it before. I think it's do to with marketing by all the companies who sell the hair removal stuff.

It's sad, though, because she too knows that her leg hair was glittery, fair and natural, but she thought other people would notice it and think her a geek. I don't want anyone to think she's a geek, and it's not really a big deal, but just annoying that her natural body isn't considered good enough. Hopefully she'll feel confident enough to let her leg hairs grow in again when she's grown up.
August 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMum
Some horrifying quotations, found easily and chosen at random from the internet:

“If you do 100 calories’ worth of exercise every day, how much weight would you lose in a year?”

“Skip one meal a day and you’re cutting out a third of your intake - well on the way to that perfect size 8. It just makes sense.”

“What is your BMI? Is it the same as your body fat ratio? If mine is low, does that mean I’m slim?”

We’re reducing our bodies to equations of value. A thing to be seen, weighed, measured for perfection. Beauty is a ratio, the ideal is a golden mean of proportion and aesthetic calculation. A woman’s body has become an item of beauty, art and sexuality – but only if the maths adds up. If it doesn’t, you don’t have a true woman’s body.

My body is not a calculation! My body is for doing, feeling and experiencing. My body is beautiful because of what it expresses and what it achieves. My body is my body, not your body, not his body, not theirs. It connects me with the world, it allows me to communicate, feel and exist. My body is me. Don’t you dare reduce me to an equation – I won’t let you. I am a complex, unique, self-directed being, not a thing. I don’t just appear, I act and react. I am a woman, and I decide what that means for me.
February 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterZoe Henderson Smith
I am fed up of being told that "real women have curves". I have a slim body with strong shoulders and narrow hips. I also happen to be a real woman!
January 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBecca
Yesterday the UK’s Press, TV and radio went into a frenzy reporting the first paper in The Lancet Obesity Series describing the global initiators of the obesity epidemic according to a study by Professor Boyd Swinburn and Dr Gary Sacks from the World Health Organisation Collaborating
Centre for Obesity at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia.

Professor Boyd Swinburn is the Chair of the International Obesity Task Force and Dr Gary Sacks is also a member.

The International Obesity Task Force plays a key role in determining policy for the World Health Organization. The International Obesity Task force is funded by the pharmaceuticals industry – part of the global weight loss industry said to be worth US$586.3 Billion by 2014.

I wonder if this study that has had everyone in a fat hatred frenzy today is biased? Hmmm.
August 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSue Thomason
Hello everybody,

I am fighting an eating disorder. My female psychoterapist told me that both male and female psychotherapists would be equally good for me. And reason for this? She said I could get easily disappointed with a feminist female psychotherapist. Well, that might well be true. However, I am afraid that I could not get more disappointed with a feminist female psychotherapist than I have gotten with someone who seems to have a hard time to understand how oppression feels, how much of oppressive power can come from men, how much of oppressive power come from men on everyday basis, how easily can a male psychotherapist take an advantage of this power, what can be the power of sisterhood and most importantly that feminism is NOT an ideology. It is part of my identity - this is who I am! This is who we are, who we have chosen to become to cope with the oppression we feel, see and experience every day.

So what I want to say?

Dear Susie Orbach, THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR ALL THE WORK YOU HAVE DONE FOR ALL OF US - for those fighting an eating disorder. It happens that I disagree with you sometimes or that I could get disappointed with you had I known you more. I nonetheless feel that you understand very well of what it mean to be a woman in a patriarchal world. It is you, through your books, who is helping me to get through all this.
July 14, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKiri
I absolutely hate the way that these days women are treated as if they're good for nothing but their body. It's incredibly sad that sexuality is valued over intelligence and personality and that prostitutes and strippers make more money than people who have worked hard without use of solely their physical appearance. I recently got into a debate with a guy over going to strip clubs for a bachelor party. I think if "one last night of fun" is needed then you aren't ready to be married. After stating this, a guy that I went to high school with brought up how strip clubs are great because it helps a woman to feel dominant and confident in herself and most women feel much better about herself when she's being stared at in a sexual way. I think that is ignorant and repulsive because a woman shouldn't have to get her confidence from being ogled. This teaches us that our bodies are all that we're good and desired for. This guy then told me that I was simply jealous of strippers because of the attention that they get. I am actually incredibly confident in myself and respect myself and feel no need to show off my body to anyone just for the attention. I would hate for that to be the only thing I'm valued for. And past that, as much as I love my boyfriend, I despise the fact that he watches porn. He claims it has nothing to do with me but I can't help but feel insulted by the fact that he feels the need to look at other naked girls when he has me. It bothers me even more that no matter how many times I tell him that it makes me feel bad about myself, it doesn't affect him at all and he doesn't understand my dislike for it. I just hate the way that the world has gone when sexuality is held so much higher than basically anything else. I believe it to be a big reason why children are growing up so wrong, so many people have body image issues, and relationships can't seem to last. But despite my detest for my boyfriend watching porn, I do appreciate the fact that he never fails to compliment me for my appearance AND my personality. If more men were like him, the three problems just named would be helped so much.
June 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKayla
I have written a play with a working title BigM!. Its about Power, Size. Race Gender.....little vignettes , Its about one womans journey toward self acceptance within a society that is trying to categorize her and keep her down. There is a dominant theme on the subject of body image and dymsmorphia.. I am writing here because I was horrified to find that many women in my test audience felt that I was too slim, too strong, too fit to be telling these stories. They found " no point of contact" because it seemed ridiculous that someone who looks like me would have the nerve to feel any sort of self loathing at all. These are highly educated women who teach Womens Studies at some local prestigious universities. Have they not heard of dysmorphia. Are they unaware that a woman can be beautiful and slim and still full of self loathing , confused about her own gender expression and orientation, have a horrible body image and even be anorexic and bulemic? How can they call themselves educated and still be so incredibly naive to think that a womans outside matches her insides?????. I don't get it. Yes I'm told I deliver a powerful show, but I just look to good to be taken seriously. Don't they get it????? Thats the whole point!!!! Thats the essesnce of this incredible cultural dis-ease that makes women in to the walking wounded.
March 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarilyn McLaughlin
Here's a link to my You Tube Channel. i just started uploading poems and such. One in particular, Medicine Bundle, celebrates woman loving woman's body. Listen to all of them if you want. There are only a few there so far. Thank you, Danielle Notaro: http://www.youtube.com/user/danpeak?feature=mhum
February 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle Notaro
The myth of the Plus - Size model: Why the fight for the 'curvy girl' is really rather lightweight

There has been an influx of plus-size models gracing fashion magazines of late. The curvier girl is "in" and this must surely be applauded. Anything that goes against the cult of thin is fine by me.
But there's a catch, you see. Being a size 14 model is fine...As long as you're as tall as Michael Jordan. Have you noticed how very in proportion most "plus size" models look? The fact is, they're probably the right weight for their height, and it's the rake thin 6ft tall girls who should be called "minus size"(excepting those blessed with a superhuman metabolism). It's not a size 16 with a muffin top and "chub-rub" who will be fronting Marc Jacobs' new campaign. This size 16 will be a long and lean, amazonian figure with barely an inch of fat on her bones.
That's not to say that one must be tall to be deemed beautiful or acceptable by the fashion industry. Think of pint-sized Cheryl Cole, infamously petite Kylie, or most Holloywood actresses for that matter. All these women measure in around the five foot mark. But again, there is a catch: All these women are thin. As attested by the recent transformation of Kelly Osbourne from slightly chubby to borderline anorexic, short girls must be thin if they are to gain fashion kudos.
So there's your choice, ladies: either you can be short and thin, tall and fat(ter) or tall and thin. Short but not thin? You're having a laugh.
Considering that the average British woman is five foot three and wears a size 16, I would say the fashion industry has a long way to go before it can legitimately claim to represent 'real women'.
November 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnnie
Dear Anybody,
it is encouraging to find you. I literally stumbled across you and am so excited i can't even begin to express it.
I live in Peru, land of the incas, machu pichu and so much discrimination one can barely believe self esteem exists. My father is peruvian, my mother is english. I look like them both, I'm lighter than my father and darker than my mother. When my sister and I visit our family in London we're described as the exotic cousins, exotically beautiful. In Peru we're just another regular dark and not so pretty girl. Peruvian aesthetics is based not only on body shape, small, slim and hardly any curves, but on the colour of your skin, ayes and hair. We loose every battle, every day, except on being small. Measuring less than a 1.60 m both my sister and I can be considered petite, our sizes though, are a different matter. I have a big breasts, my sister has a big bum, small sizes in T-shirts and hardly ever fit in a size small piece of clothing.
I have always thought my body was small but big, that it's size wasn't right for its height. My big thighs, my big breasts, my hips, my arms, I hated everything while I was teenager, the only thing I liked were my wrists for being the only bony part of my body. I went on to become an anthropologist and to specialize in gender and body related subjetcs. I realized that much of my body troubles were not only due to size and shape but due to colour also. That wide hips, large breasts and thighs simbolized sex and lower classes, this coming to the point where men have called me "slut" and "whore" ("perra" and "puta") just by walking down the street where I live, in a nice part of town. What is more shocking, is that I am accused for this unacceptable behaviour, surely I was wearing something revealing, that is not the point.
I have wished to be a ghost of my self, just skin and bone, no colour and no life. Self esteem seemed like a hopeless goal. But the more I get into this subject, the more I analyze it, the more I realize something is wrong. What my body probably means is not who I am and I am determined to let other people know it.
I don't diet, I hate gyms, I love chocolate, and I have decided I like my body just as it is, stretch marks included, it tells my story and that story is a fascinating one.
There isn't a woman I know who hasn't had an issue like mine, who can't find clothes in her size be it in bras, blouses or jeans, there isn't a woman i know who has decided not to go out because she feels too fat. They are all beautiful women, intelligent women, wonderful women. And all I can think is that this has to change.
August 16, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSusana
Creams can help you for awhile, but nothing can beat the effects of a toxic body, and if your body isn't at it's peak then eventually it will show through your complexion by way of those nagging under eye circles, bags, wrinkles and lifeless skin.
July 22, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGreenlight
When looking into an endless selection of beauty supplies, there are some things that you have to remember. Make sure that the product does not contain harmful ingredients. These include alcohol-based, petroleum-based, and chemically-based compounds. Look into the back label of the product to know its formulation. If you do not know the ingredient or it is hard for you to say it aloud, this implies that you have to search for another beauty item. There are several beauty products that are formulated with natural ingredients, those that are taken from natural herb extracts. Also, you can also obtain tips on how to make your own all-natural beauty product.
July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAna
What about the fabulous ladies of the world who lack in the uh-- vertical stature?--- area??? I am 5 foot 3, 125 pounds, staggering between a size 2 and 4, but still feel uncomfortable about my body "type." You never see anyone under 5 ft 8 on the catwalk, at least it seems that way. Is there any hope for us too?????
July 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkurston alexandra
Thank you very, very much Susie Orbach for writing the book "On eating". I suffered from anorexia at the age of fifteen until I was seventeen, and your book really helped me to overcome it slowly but surely. Now it has become a habit for me to eat when im hungry and to stop when full. And I'm better at recognizing and listening to feelings than I was before. I've reached a healthy weight too, and maintained it a year. All thanks to you!

Synne (from Norway)
June 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSynne
I never had problems with weight...1.80 am tall and weighing 60 kg...at the age of 30 years
June 23, 2010 | Unregistered Commentergerovital h3

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